ESTA News

Restrictions on access to American territory due to the health crisis

Since November 8, 2021 foreigners can again travel to the United States under certain conditions. The American territory had been closed to foreigners since March 2020 due to the COVID-19 health crisis.

The United States had proclaimed through its then President Donald Trump the closure of its borders at the beginning of March 2020. Since November 8, 2021 you can again enter the USA under certain conditions. You must be able to present the following documents at boarding:

(December 2021 information)

Control of the presence on social networks to enter the USA

The online form for ESTA was updated in 2019. It now includes optional entry of social media profiles for people entering the United States.

To enter the USA, you must now indicate your profile on Facebook or on the main social networks. Unlike the visa application, for ESTA this step is currently optional. He did not ask you to indicate your access (login and password), you only have to indicate the address of the profile on the social network.

To reduce the risk of a dangerous individual setting foot in the United States, a law was introduced. Its principle? Require visa applicants to provide all their social media credentials up to five years before they apply for entry clearance, in an effort to uncover suspicious material. At the same time, telephone numbers and emails are also studied.

(Information from June 2019)

Soon a non-stamping of the passport in Iran

Since the Muslim Ban was passed in the United States, Iranians and people who traveled to Iran after March 1, 2011 are no longer welcome in the United States.

This Muslim Ban has of course had dramatic consequences for the country: various air groups such as Air France and British Airways have just canceled their lines serving Iran, because they were no longer, according to them, becoming more profitable. Indeed, a passport stamped Iran can now block entry into American territory.

As a result, European tourists are afraid of reprisals from the USA if they visit the country.

The Iranian government’s idea, in order to save tourism and its economy, is to offer an alternative to the visa stamp in the passport. According to the Minister of Cultural Heritage and Tourism, this measure would reassure tourists wishing to visit Iran, in relation to American sanctions. Foreign passports will therefore not be stamped.

(Information from August 2018)

700,000 visitors exceeded their authorized length of stay in the USA in 2017

Between October 1, 2016 and September 30, 2017, 701,900 people continued their stay in the United States despite the expiry of their authorization to stay.

Apart from settling permanently on American territory, each national of a foreign country must obtain a temporary residence permit. Depending on the country, the reason for the trip and the profile of the applicant, the title differs but the principle remains the same: a specific duration, on US soil, not to be exceeded under penalty of being considered an illegal immigrant.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently released its annual report. During the 2017 fiscal year, 701,900 visitors exceeded the duration allowed by their authorization (visa, ESTA, etc.). This includes, on the one hand, people suspected of residing in the United States after September 30, 2017 (606,926, less than in 2016) and, on the other hand, those who left the country during the year but later than expected (94,974).

Canada and Mexico, because of their borders with the USA, together represent more than 20% of overruns (154,140 “illegal” visitors). As for the French, about 18,000 of them continued their stay despite an expired permit.

(Information from August 2018)

Ban on entering the USA for Javier Solana

The famous European politician and diplomat, Javier Solana was not allowed to enter American territory.

In general, it is difficult to enter American soil and this has not escaped Javier Solana. The Spanish politician applied for ESTA, but his authorization was refused. For what reasons ? His trip to Iran is the cause of this refusal. Indeed, the conditions for obtaining an ESTA authorization stipulate that the applicant must not have traveled to Iran, Sudan, Iraq, Libya or Syria. And it was indeed the case for Javier Solana. Like what, even politicians do not escape the law. To organize his trip, Javier Solana will have to apply for a visa.

(Information from July 2018)

200,000 Salvadorans will soon have to leave the United States

The “Temporary Protected Status” (TPS) program will end very soon.

In what is the latest twist in the Trump administration’s tightening of immigration policy, the US government announced on the night of January 4 that the program granting temporary protected status to more than 200,000 Salvadorans will end. during the year 2018.

For nearly 10 years, this program has enabled Salvadoran refugees to live and work in the United States following the devastating earthquake that struck El Salvador in 2001. A decision announced only a few weeks after 45,000 nationals of Haiti also lost their refugee status. The latest rumors predict a similar fate for Honduran nationals currently benefiting from the TPS scheme.

A decision which is of course controversial but does not seem to worry the American president, used to causing controversy.

(Information from January 2018)

The anti-migration decree validated by the American Supreme Court

Donald Trump’s legal battle is not over

President Donald Trump’s anti-immigration executive order has been reinstated by the US Supreme Court. It’s a victory for the White House.

Signed on September 24, 2017, the text prohibits the entry into American territory of nationals of six countries: Chad, Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Somalia. It also suspends the entry of Venezuelan government officials.

It should be noted that the highly controversial decree was suspended on October 17 by a Hawaii judge, declaring that the text did not prove how the entry of more than 150 million foreign nationals from the countries concerned “would harm the interests of the States -United”. Nevertheless, while waiting for the Court of Appeal to rule on the subject, the Supreme Court authorized the application of the decree in its judgment delivered on Monday, December 4.

(Information from December 2017)

The green card lottery soon to be abolished?

The American president has announced that he wants to remove this device following the recent terrorist attack in New York.

Each year, a major lottery is organized by “US Citizenship and Immigration Services” to enable nationals of eligible countries to obtain a green card authorizing them to stay and work in the USA.

This program was set up by the government, led at the time by the Democratic camp, in order to maintain a mix within the immigrant population. Every year, about 50,000 people obtain the precious sesame by participating in the lottery. However, this project may soon end, at the request of US President Donald Trump.

Indeed, following the recent arrest of a terrorist, having caused the death of several people, entered the United States thanks to a green card pocketed via the lottery; Mr. Trump, very involved in the preservation of internal security, wants to end the “diversity immigrant visa program”, which he considers too risky and inappropriate.

He proposes instead to have recourse to a chosen immigration which would be based above all on “merit”! If the lottery were to disappear, rest assured, there are other alternatives for staying in the United States! For example, you can apply for the green card for specific and justified reasons (family ties, job offer, etc.), apply for a visa, obtain an ESTA using a simple and quick procedure, accessible directly from our platform.

(Information from November 2017)

Donald Trump’s immigration decree still blocked

Two judges suspended the US president’s 3rd anti-immigration executive order

President Donald Trump suffers yet another setback for his anti-immigration decrees. Indeed, a few hours apart, a federal judge from the State of Maryland as well as a magistrate from Hawaii both suspended the application prohibiting nationals of 7 countries from entering American territory. This suspension is mainly due to the fact that the decree targets Muslims in particular under the guise of strengthening the country’s security.

It is therefore still possible for citizens of Chad, Yemen, Libya, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Iran and North Korea to join the USA if they have a valid reason in the eyes of the American authorities. Nevertheless, the government intends to appeal quickly in order to bring the case before the Supreme Court. The latter had agreed with the president for the application of a 90-day period of the 2nd version of the decree from which the latest version directly stems.

(Information from November 2017)

Searches of electronic devices before boarding to the United States

In recent months, carrying a large digital device in the cabin has become prohibited on flights departing from certain airports in the Middle East and the Maghreb and bound for the United States.

Recently, the ban was lifted, in favor of other means aimed at combating terrorist acts: presence of explosives sniffing dogs, increase in body searches but also of the computer equipment of certain passengers. And it is precisely this last point that is currently being debated!

Indeed, civil rights groups such as the ACLU and the Electronic Frontier Foundation have sued the Department of Homeland Security and immigration authorities for improper searches of cell phones, tablets and computers of certain passengers.

According to the information provided by the associations, several digital devices were confiscated for many months, without the passengers who were victims of this new measure being subsequently worried. To date, the government has not wished to speak.

The regulations concerning flights to the United States often tend to change, we advise travelers to check with their company before boarding, in order to avoid any inconvenience.

(Information from October 2017)

Flights to the United States: PC ban postponed

PCs and tablets will not finally be banned for flights from Europe to the United States

The American authorities were planning to put in place a measure prohibiting computers, tablets and any electronic device larger than a mobile phone in the cabin for flights departing from Europe.

This ban has already been in force since last March for flights from certain Middle Eastern countries to stem a “real threat” of terrorism.

A total of 10 airports and 8 countries are currently concerned: Turkey, Egypt, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Qatar and Jordan.

The United Kingdom wasted no time following this announcement since it took a similar measure concerning only 6 countries (Qatar, Morocco and the United Arab Emirates were not concerned, but Lebanon is however on this list).

(Information from July 2017)